Nowadays even landing an interview is a pretty huge accomplishment. The internet is excellent for finding job opportunities and listings, but the most popular jobs are the most competitive. Depending on the job, it’s possible that hundreds or even thousands of candidates are applying for the same role. Standing out from the pack has never been more important, because you want to make yourself a candidate that always gets shuffled to the top of the resume pile. Luckily there are some essentials that will help not only land more interviews but also improve your success rate. You can thank us later once the job offers start rolling in. If they don’t, it’s time to rethink your strategy again.
Interviews are all about what you know. This is why one of the most important steps in the interview process is researching all you can about the role and company you are applying for. Basically every company has a website and you should definitely start there, but you need to dive deeper. The internet is full of helpful information about most companies so you should definitely start there. Human resources will ask questions, and this type of preparation will improve your responses. There are other sites with helpful information as well, such as Glassdoor, which will tell you more about the company culture and real job responsibilities. People who actually worked at the company will fill out reviews and show you exactly what you are getting into. The part of the interview where they ask, “do you have any questions for us” is the part you need to excel in. Always have a predetermined number of responses on-hand based off of your research efforts and it will further enhance your chances of success at interviews.
2.) Dress to Impress
People will always tell you that appearances don’t really matter, but during an interview this couldn’t be further from the truth. Half of the battle is the first impression, and looking less than stellar will have a negative impact on HR’s perception of you. This might sound superficial to some but it’s a reality. Human resources want to pick the best candidates, and how you look can play a big role in that. They want to make sure that you fit with the company culture. If you don’t have any great outfits then it’s time to make a change. Focus on looking your best and you will look better to human resources.
3.) Perfect Your Resume / Cover Letter
Having a great resume can make a huge difference in your job search. It could be the reason why you’re not getting the callbacks you should. The cover letter is just as important, because it’s a more personalized assessment and an opportunity to prove why you want to be part of the company. Your resume should also be optimized for keywords. This means you need to read through the job listings and make sure that your skills and prior work responsibilities are matching the listings. Sometimes this means customizing your resume from job to job, but it’s a proven way to move your application to the top of the pile. If you are having trouble with your resume look through some templates online and model yours after professional examples.
4.) Thank You Letter
How important is the thank you letter? It’s certainly not a requirement, since many people have landed excellent jobs without sending one. But it’s turning into an important step that works in your favor. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, and should be direct and to the point. After all, you’re lucky to even have the chance to attend the interview, so you should always thank HR for considering you for the role. Sending a professional thank you letter might just swing the momentum in your favor. At the very least you won’t be the one candidate who forgot to send a letter. Don’t be that person.
5.) Showcase Your Knowledge
When you are applying for a job it’s your chance to prove your expertise in your field. Get excited when talking about what you’ve been doing for a living. Not everyone can say that they love their jobs, but the fact remains that you have to spend the majority of your week there, so it should be something that you enjoy. Touch up on your work knowledge and get up to date with current industry trends. Being prepared can make all of the difference.